The Indigenous Data Network (IDN) assists Indigenous communities in developing the technical capability and resources to enable them to manage their data for community advancement. By strengthening communities’ agency in their data, the network empowers them to make informed decisions about their own development.
Bringing together community, university, government, non-government and private sector partners, the IDN creates an ongoing community of practice to address a range of shared concerns related to: data collection, management, discovery, and access; capability development; negotiation with government and non-government organisations; and educational programs.
The Data Network is led by a Steering Committee. A secretariat and administrative hub are based at the University of Melbourne, which is well-positioned in this space given its breadth of experience in Indigenous scholarship and in digital social sciences and humanities for more than two decades.
- Identifying best practice in community data collection, management and access.
- Assisting Indigenous communities to apply best practice in data management by providing technical and educational resources.
- Developing specific strategies and approaches to make better use of data over which Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have ownership.
- Creating a directory of databases to increase awareness of existing data sets and how to access them.
- Integrating and archiving Indigenous datasets and preventing the orphaning of important datasets which would be detrimental to communities.
- Negotiating with government and non-government organisations to ensure data activities are aligned with Indigenous priorities, and that data collected is available for sharing under appropriate conditions.
- Working with the Indigenous Research Exchange to develop guidelines and best-practice case studies for research and data analysis in evaluation to improve Indigenous outcomes.
- Coordinating educational programs to ensure the development of a critical mass of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with expertise in the data sciences.
- Developing panels of experts who can provide advice and assistance on data issues.
Indigenous Data Governance Working Group
The Indigenous Data Network is the convenor of the Indigenous Data Governance Working Group (the IDG Working Group), which brings together Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community-controlled organisations, Commonwealth, state and territory agencies and departments, and tertiary education and other research institutions, to enhance the coordination of Indigenous data governance nationally.
IDG Working Group meetings
The IDG Working Group meets regularly to coordinate joint data governance activities among participants at national and regional levels. IDG Woking Group meetings are coordinated and led by the IDN and co-convened together with a different Working Group Partner on a rotating basis. IDG Working Group terms of reference, reports and other documentation are generated and maintained by the IDN.
Inaugural meeting of the Working Group
The inaugural meeting of the IDG Working Group was co-convened by the IDN and the Kaiela Institute in the regional Victorian town of Shepparton on 27 November 2019. Participating agencies, departments and organisations included:
- The National Indigenous Australians Agency
- The Australian Productivity Commission
- The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare
- The Australian Institute of Family Studies
- The Australian Bureau of Statistics
- The Victorian Department of Health and Human Services
- The Centre for Victorian Data Linkage
- Births Deaths and Marriages Victoria
- Generation Victoria (GenV) – Murdoch Children’s Research Institute
- Empowered Communities
- Coalition of Peaks, National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO)
- The Kimberley Land Council
- Barang Regional Alliance
- Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Community Health Service Brisbane
- National Indigenous Research and Knowledges Network
- Queensland University of Technology
- Melbourne Data Analytics Platform
- The University of Melbourne
Find out more
To find out more about the IDG Working Group and its meeting schedule, please contact the IDN at email@example.com.
Indigenous Data Sovereignty Symposium
Presentations and resources from the Indigenous Data Sovereignty Symposium, held at the University of Melbourne on 11 and 12 October 2017.